Horse Racing By Jon Ivan-Duke

Don't Touch Out to 8/1 Following Ayr Gold Cup Draw

The live draw for the William Hill Ayr Gold Cup took place  on Thursday morning at Ayr Racecourse, with special guests Robbie Savage and  newly crowned Miss Scotland, Mhairi Fergusson.

Every horse was drawn at random and connections had just 60  seconds to choose a stall for their horse.

First out of the hat was 2013 winner Highland Colori for  Andrew Balding. Connections chose lucky stall 19, which has won for the last  two years and was 2nd in 2012.

William Hill’s favourite Don’t Touch was third last out of  the hat, with Richard Fahey opting for Stall 8 – William Hill pushed him out to  8/1 from 7/1.

Following the draw William adjusted the odds on six horses:

Tanzeel 14/1 from 16/1
  Buckstay 12/1 from 14/1
  Algar Lad 14/1 from 16/1
  Blaine 14/1 from 16/1
  Toofi 16/1 from 14/1
  Don’t Touch 8/1 from 7/1

“The William Hill Ayr Gold Cup can be won from low, middle  or high, but the hot stall in recent years has been Stall 19, with the last two  winners and a second in the past three runnings. Maybe that bodes well for 2013  winner Highland Colori,” said William Hill spokesman Jon Ivan-Duke.

“The hot horses in the antepost betting are Don’t Touch,  Highland Acclaim and Jack Dexter.”

Don’t Touch is a solid favourite with William Hill and the  bookmakers reckon as an unbeaten horse he will be very popular on Saturday.  Highland Acclaim and Jack Dexter are the big movers in the market, both in to  12-1 from 16-1 and 20-1 respectively.

Horse Profiles:


Stall    Number



Stall    1

Hoof    It


Stall    2

Highland    Acclaim


Stall    3



Stall    4

Poyle    Vinnie


Stall    5



Stall    6

Boom    The Groom


Stall    7

Lexington    Abbey


Stall    8

Don’t    Touch


Stall    9



Stall    10

Golden    Steps


Stall    11

Rene    Mathis


Stall    12



Stall    13

Jack    Dexter


Stall    14

Dinkum    Diamond


Stall    15

Heaven’s    Guest


Stall    16

Majestic    Moon


Stall    17



Stall    18

Glory    Awaits


Stall    19

Highland    Colori


Stall    20



Stall    21



Stall    22

Sound    Advice


Stall    23

Red    Pike


Stall    24

Algar    Lad


Stall    25



Horse Facts

Jack Dexter – flying the flag for Scottish trainer Jim  Goldie, bidding to become first Scottish trained winner since Roman Warrior in  1975. Won the Bronze Cup in 2012 and 3rd and 8th  respectively in last two Gold Cups
  Heaven’s Guest  - trained by Richard Fahey, has  finished fourth in the race the last two years. Won a valuable handicap at  Ascot in July.
  Glory Awaits – not won for over a year when he landed the  £225,000 Topkapi Trophy in Turkey. Trainer Kevin Ryan has won the race three  times since 2007.
  Rene Mathis – one of [3 or 4] for trainer Richard Fahey,  down the field in last year’s race. Won well at Goodwood latest.
  Tanzeel – Charlie Hills is having a great year with his  sprinters, this horse won the Dash at York, but found 7f too far last time.  Lightly raced for his age.
  Rivellino – 3rd in the Stewards Cup behind  Magical Memory (the winner has since finished 3rd in Group 1 Sprint  Cup at Haydock). Trainer Karl Burke won this in 1998 with Always Alight
  Sound Advice – in cracking form, looking for a hat-trick,  but in 50 starts under rules he has never run in a sprint.
  Highland Colori – won this race in 2013 and now below that  winning mark. Dangerous if on song, but not won for almost two years.
  Poyle Vinnie – won Scottish Stewards’ Cup in July. If you’d  put £1 on every horse in the last five years that Phillip Makin has ridden for  Keith Dalgleish, you’d be £37 in profit.
  Golden Steps – trained by Marco Botti, gone up 7lb in the  weights for winning the Stewards’ Sprint at Goodwood. Frankie Dettori has  ridden the Ayr Gold Cup winner twice before.
  Dinkum Diamond – last win was in March 2014 when landing the  William Hill Cammidge Trophy, but a repeat of his effort when 4th in  the Stewards’ Cup at Goodwood this summer would see him go close.
  Toofi – 2nd behind Hoof It at Doncaster last  weekend and 2nd in the Stewards’ Cup at Goodwood. Doesn’t win often,  but often in the places.
  Professor – Michael Attwater doesn’t send many on the long  journey to Ayr from his base in Epsom, so it’s notable this former Listed  winner is sent here after a decent second at Haydock.
  Majestic Moon – trained by John Gallagher, carries 5lb  penalty for winning a handicap at Ascot latest. 16th in the Ayr  Silver Cup last year
  Ninjago – 2nd in 2014 Stewards’ Cup at Goodwood, trained by  Richard Hannon, he needs to bounce back after a streak of poor performances
  Buckstay – in good form but never raced over this distance.  Peter Chapple-Hyam has only sent one horse to Ayr in the last few seasons (and  it was a winner).
  Red Pike – part-owned by Sir Alex Ferguson, all five of this  gelding’s wins have come over this distance and should make bold bid for  trainer Bryan Smart
  Algar Lad – David O’Meara is having an incredible season and  there may be a bit more left in the locker with this progressive gelding
  Astrophysics – formerly with David Elsworth and now with Ann  Duffield, he was a narrow 2nd in Group 2 Flying Childers Stakes last  year. Only had six career starts and not completely ruled out
  Don’t Touch – the one to beat for Richard Fahey. Unbeaten in  four starts, he won the William Hill Great St Wilfrid at Ripon latest, bids to  become the first 3yo winner of the race since Funfair Wane in 2002.
  Boom The Groom – Tony Carroll’s colt was 3rd in  the Epsom Dash in June, but he has not won on turf since his debut in 2013
  Highland Acclaim – fast finishing 5th in last  weekend’s Portland Handicap at Doncaster and highly respected for this season’s  in-form trainer David O’Meara
  Blaine – Kevin Ryan has a great record in the race and this  gelding is now 6lb lower in the weights than when 3rd in this race  last year
  Hoof It – sneaks in to the race under a penalty after  winning at Doncaster. Mick Easterby’s sprinter is owned by golf professionals  Chubby Chandler and Lee Westwood
  Lexington Abbey – on a career high mark but in good form and  Pat Smullen rode the horse to finish fifth in last year’s Ayr Silver Cup


Generally, the trends from the turn of the century, show  that on quicker ground, middle to high numbers are preferred when trying to  find the winner and on slower ground, lower numbers have a better chance.

Winning Stalls

When the ground is slower than good to soft – Winning  Stalls: 7, 8, 20, 12, 8

When the ground is good to soft or quicker – Winning  Stalls: 22, 16, 10, 2, 6, 22, 15, 17, 19, 19

Winning Stall
  Low (Stall 9 or lower): 5
  Middle (Stall 10-18): 5
  High (Stall 19 or higher): 5

First five finishing places (Win, 2nd, 3rd,  4th, 5th)
  Low (Stall 9 or lower): 22
  Middle (Stall 10-18): 25
  High (Stall 19 or higher): 28


The William Hill Ayr Gold Cup is increasing in quality  every year:

Average Official Rating Of  The Winner First Five Renewals Of This Century (2000 to 2004): 92

Average Official Rating Of  The Winner Last Five Renewals (2010 to 2014): 102

Since the turn of the century, there has been an even  spread of 4yo, 5yo and 6yo winners, but 3yo’s have only won once and horses  that are 7yo or older have not won any.

Age Of Winner (2000 to  2014)
  3yo: 1 winner
  4yo: 5 winners
  5yo: 5 winners
  6yo: 4 winners
  7yo or older: No winners

In terms of the actual weight carried in the race, those  in the middle of the weights have won a higher proportion of races

Actual weight carried:
  9st 3lb or more: 4 winners
  8st 9lb – 9st 2lb: 8  winners
  8st 8lb or less: 3 winners

Further Stats

  • Nine of the last 15 winners of the  William Hill Ayr Gold Cup have been trained by either David Nicholls or Kevin  Ryan.
  • Horses that don’t make the cut for the  William Hill Ayr Gold Cup can run in the Ayr Silver Cup or Ayr Bronze Cup
  • No winner aged 7 years or older since  Hard To Figure in 1993
  • The last winning favourite was 3-1  victor Coastal Bluff in 1996
  • Last year’s winner Louis The Pious was  the shortest-priced winner since 2001 (10/1)
  • The biggest priced winners since the  turn of the century have returned at 33-1 (in 2000 and 2004)
  • The average SP of the winner in the  last 15 renewals is just under 18/1

For  further information on the betting market please visit: